Thomas Jefferson’s Academical Village with its Rotunda, ten pavilions and gardens, and ranges initially served as the classroom, library, and living space for 123 students, taught by eight faculty members. Today the University owns 15,840,742 gross square feet of space on 1,700 acres. The University now occupies 549 buildings, with close to 21,000 enrolled students pursuing degrees in more than fifty different fields and taught by more than 2,000 faculty members.
SOUTH LAWN PROJECT
College and Gradute School of Arts & Sciences
To the left of the connecting Commons Building is Gibson Hall, named for David E. Gibson (College ’62, Law ’65) and home to the politics and religious studies departments. Nau Hall, at right, is named for John L. Nau III (College ’68) and houses the Corcoran Department of History. Both alumni are key donors and longtime benefactors of the University.
The pace of construction on the Grounds has increased in recent years, as University planners take advantage of low interest rates and highly competitive bids that lower the overall costs of construction. Expansion plans are made with regard not only to the University’s traditions but also to the educational needs of future students and faculty.
Extending and Preserving Jefferson’s Legacy
The South Lawn Project, through its name and physical placement, underscores the University’s aspirations for the new suite of buildings for Arts & Sciences, the most ambitious undertaking on Central Grounds in a century. The project is influenced, both in style and in its mix of office, classroom, and common spaces, by Jefferson’s design for the Lawn. In January 2009, the history, politics, and religious studies departments moved into new offices in Nau and Gibson Halls, while the Commons Building and connecting terrace to New Cabell Hall opened for students returning in August 2010.
Even as the University extends the Lawn, it continues to preserve and protect its original structures. Pavilion IX, one of the most distinctive pavilions on the Lawn, is undergoing thorough renovation, and a parapet was erected in front of the roof of Pavilion X, replacing one removed in the nineteenth century. Adding finishing touches to the first renovation of Pavilion II in fifty years, the University used lasers to strip 180 years of grime and atmospheric pollution from its Ionic capitals. The Office of the Architect has commissioned an assessment to determine how best to restore the deteriorated Corinthian columns and roof on the Rotunda. The work is part of a planned phased restoration of the Rotunda.
These efforts require generous private support. This year, the University received its largest-ever bequest for historic preservation, a $4.9 million legacy from Richard K. Ernst (College ’43, Law ’50).
Accommodating Growth in the Health System
New construction in the Health System area is proceeding according to a comprehensive and unified plan. The new Claude Moore Medical Education building, currently the most technologically advanced medical school facility in the nation, opened in August 2010. In the adjacent McLeod Hall, the research hub for the School of Nursing, renovation is under way. The buildings’ proximity will allow greater collaboration between the two schools.
At the same time, the Medical Center is being reconfigured to add capacity while dramatically improving access for patients and staff. In the summer of 2010, a new Transitional Care Hospital opened for long-term patients. A major hospital bed expansion, scheduled for completion within the next two years, will place new rooms above the main entrance to the Medical Center. Just across the street, the Emily Couric Clinical Cancer Center will open in the spring of 2011, helping employees coordinate and deliver care more efficiently.
Work begins in 2011 on the Barry and Bill Battle Building at U.Va. Children’s Hospital. The new building will consolidate and expand outpatient services for children and be physically connected to U.Va. Children’s Hospital pediatric inpatient services to provide easy access for patients, families, and medical staff.
Expanding Space on the Grounds
The University is also making more efficient use of land on either side of Emmet Street at the Curry School and the Central Grounds Parking Garage. The new Bavaro Hall, which doubles the space for the Curry School, opened for fall semester classes. Renovation of Ruffner Hall, the school’s original building, will follow.
A major expansion and renovation to Newcomb Hall that began May 2010 will double the capacity of its dining facilities. The plan also calls for improving the entrance for visitors walking from the Central Grounds Parking Garage. The University Bookstore is also being expanded. Newcomb Hall will operate throughout the renovations, to be completed by November 2012.
Adding capacity within existing land area is a main theme of the multiphase plan to replace the Alderman Road residence houses. Since the opening of Kellogg House in 2008, three buildings have been demolished to make way for two more residence halls and a commons building. Over the next three years, five more halls will be razed and three new ones built to replace them.
Several other projects are also under way that will add space for academic programs and research. New buildings include the new Arts & Sciences Physical and Life Sciences Research Building, the Engineering School’s Rice Hall, and the Band Rehearsal Hall. The Drama Building addition will include a new thrust-stage theatre and renovations in Garrett Hall will ready the space for the Batten School.